Thursday, May 30, 2013

The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight

The Statistical Probability of Love at First SightFrom Goodreads:    Who would have guessed that four minutes could change everything?

Today should be one of the worst days of seventeen-year-old Hadley Sullivan's life. Having missed her flight, she's stuck at JFK airport and late to her father's second wedding, which is taking place in London and involves a soon-to-be stepmother Hadley's never even met. Then she meets the perfect boy in the airport's cramped waiting area. His name is Oliver, he's British, and he's sitting in her row.

A long night on the plane passes in the blink of an eye, and Hadley and Oliver lose track of each other in the airport chaos upon arrival. Can fate intervene to bring them together once more?

Quirks of timing play out in this romantic and cinematic novel about family connections, second chances, and first loves. Set over a twenty-four-hour-period, Hadley and Oliver's story will make you believe that true love finds you when you're least expecting it. 

My Thoughts:

-    This book really surprised me. It was so much more and better than what I expected.

-    I thought this was going to be a total contemporary romance, and there is a bit of that, but it is also about two people their struggles with life.

-    I enjoyed getting to know Hadley and Oliver, and the way they each dealt with their struggles and families. 

-    I really like how Hadley and her dad talked things through. I think a lot of parent/child relationships are similar to Hadley and her parents.

-    I liked Hadley a lot, and I found myself relating to her and wanting to be her friend.

-    Oliver is such a gentleman. He just might be added to my literature crushes. I'm still not sure on this one yet, but he is close!

-    I LOVE that this whole book happens within 24 hours! So cool! So much happens, and I have had long days, and they feel like they last forever. I want more 1 day books!

-    There could be more about Oliver and Hadley, but I really like this as a stand alone book. The author did a great job tying things up and giving us just enough. 

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

A Tale of Two Castles

A Tale of Two CastlesGoodreads Description:    An enchanting tale of a girl who dreams of a home on the stage but finds refuge instead in a dragon's lair. Newbery Honor and New York Times bestselling author Gail Carson Levine delivers an engaging story of a spirited leading lady cast in the role of a lifetime!

Newly arrived in the town of Two Castles, twelve-year-old Elodie wants nothing more than to become an apprentice to a theater troupe. But alas, the troupe turns her away. The only one who offers to take her in is the brilliant dragon Meenore, who sells fire-roasted bread and cheese skewers and moonlights as a detective.

Elodie and Meenore's first case together concerns the town's shape-shifting ogre, Count Jonty Um. He is in grave danger: Someone wants him dead. Elodie disguises herself as a lowly kitchen maid in Count Jonty Um's castle to discover the villain. Everyone is a suspect-from the handsome cat trainer Master Thiel to kindly Goodwife Celeste-and not even Elodie escapes suspicion. Will she be able to find the culprit before it's too late?

Fans of Ella Enchanted and Fairest will delight in this rich fantasy about a remarkable heroine who finds friendship where she least expects it and discovers that goodness and evil come in all shapes and sizes. Kirkus Reviews gave a starred review to A Tale of Two Castles, calling it "a thoroughly delicious romp from the author of Ella Enchanted. The plot is winningly unpredictable, the characters easy to relate to, the humor subtle and the action well-paced."

Extras included in the paperback edition.

My Thoughts:

-    This was a charming tale with a bit of mystery!

-    Gail Carson Levine is a very practical writer, and I enjoy her style. She hasn't done a mystery before, and this was a fun new tale from her!

-    I enjoyed the made up French names. 

-    I liked Elodie a lot. She was a very fun and believable character. I liked how she sought acceptance and approval from her Masteress. I feel that way about some people at times.

-    There were a lot of suspects in this mystery. I really had no idea who the culprit would be. It was fun to guess.

-    Jonty Um was one of my favorites. He was gentle and humorous. It was a new twist to an ogre's character. I also loved that he loved dogs.

-    The ending is wide open for another story, and I'm excited to read more about these characters. 

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

The Winner!

Thanks to everyone who entered my giveaway!

and the winner is....

Whitney from Vivid Reads

Congrats Whitney!
You should receive an email from me soon. Please respond or I will choose another winner!

Monday, May 27, 2013

My Uncle's Funeral

It was a very fitting Memorial Day weekend for me. My sweet Uncle Ivan died, and we had his funeral on Saturday. He was a veteran, and they gave him a military send off. It was very special to the family, and amazing to witness.

My Uncle did a lot in his life. Mostly he was remembered for his service in the military and his service to scouts.

Here are his medals.

He was buried in a military cemetery. It was so humbling and awesome to see all those graves with flags for Memorial Day.

Here is his coffin with the flag draped over it.

A soldier saluting while they played taps and shot the guns.

Folding of the flag.

Presenting the flag to my Aunt Loretta.

Each of their children were presented with a flag as well.

This was my Uncle's oldest brother. He consecrated the grave.

Between losing one of my favorite people and witnessing all the patriotic stuff, I was a mess. I cried a ton! It was a day I will not forget.

Happy Memorial Day!
Thanks to all the veterans and for all they've done for me and my country!

Wednesday, May 22, 2013


SweetheartsFrom Goodreads:    As children, Jennifer Harris and Cameron Quick were both social outcasts. They were also one another's only friend. So when Cameron disappears without warning, Jennifer thinks she's lost the only person who will ever understand her. Now in high school, Jennifer has been transformed. Known as Jenna, she's popular, happy, and dating, everything "Jennifer" couldn't be---but she still can't shake the memory of her long-lost friend. 

When Cameron suddenly reappears, they are both confronted with memories of their shared past and the drastically different paths their lives have taken.

From the National Book Award nominated author of Story of a Girl, Sweethearts is a story about the power of memory, the bond of friendship, and the quiet resilience of our childhood hearts.

My Thoughts:

-    This was good, but it wasn't amazing! 

-    I feel like we just got the surface of the story. I wanted it to go a bit more in depth. There is so much more to this story that we don't get to see, and I wish the author had explored the characters more. The book isn't that long, so I think more detail could have been added no problem.

-    I liked Jenna. She felt a lot of the same insecurities I felt in school. I like that she ate when stressed. It is not good, but something a lot of people can relate to.

-    Cameron was important to the story, but I felt like he was a ghost of a character. I wanted to know more about him and his life.

-    I am a little disappointed. I've heard a lot about Sara Zarr's books and how everyone loves them, but it wasn't anything special. I still enjoyed it, but I just wanted more.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Favorite Book Covers Of Books I've Read

This is going to be hard to narrow down to 10!!
Eyes Like Stars (Théâtre Illuminata, #1) Perchance to Dream (Théâtre Illuminata, #2)
So Silver Bright (Théâtre Illuminata, #3) The Thirteenth Princess
Unlocking the Spell (Wide-Awake Princess, #2) Cinder (Lunar Chronicles, #1)
Chasing Brooklyn Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Harry Potter, #3)
Girl in the Arena Shadows on the Moon

Monday, May 20, 2013


Silverthorn (The Riftwar Saga, #3)Goodreads Synopsis:    A poisoned bolt has struck down the Princess Anita on the day of her wedding to Prince Arutha of Krondor.

To save his beloved, Arutha sets out in search of the mystic herb called Silverthorn that only grows in the dark and forbidding land of the Spellweavers.

Accompanied by a mercenary, a minstrel, and a clever young thief, he will confront an ancient evil and do battle with the dark powers that threaten the enchanted realm of Midkemia.

My Thoughts:

-    SO MUCH FUN!!

-    This book has a slightly different feel from the first two. It has new villains and a whole lot of new predicaments.

-    There was a lot going on with a lot of characters in this story, but it is written so well that there isn't any confusion and everything makes sense. 

-    I love the characters in Feist's books! They are so amazing and awesome in their own way. There is know way I could pick a favorite.

-    Brother Dominic went all Thor on us for a bit. That was awesome!

-    Jimmy is a more prominent character in this one. He really adds a lot to the story and already established characters. He is one of my favorites. 

-    There were more emotions in this book. The struggle to save Anita was felt throughout the journey, and I could feel the fear, need for speed, anger, hope, etc. 

-    I loved that Pug journeyed back to Kelewan. His journey and research there were very enlightening.

-    The action towards the end is riveting. I felt like I was right there! The writing is so good!

-    There are a few surprises at the end, and I can't wait to dive into the next book!

Previous books in The Riftwar Saga
(click on to cover to see my thoughts)

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Photo a Day

This month I'm participating in Rae Gun Ramblings' Photo a Day.

Here are my photos for this week!

Day 12: Made It

Day 13: Reading Spot

Day 14: Most Recommended

Day 15: Freebie

Day 16: Current Cover

Day 17: Bookish Place

Day 18: Blue

You can follow my photos on Instragram

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Tragedy Strikes

My parents came over yesterday, and the told me that someone very dear to me had passed away. 

My Uncle Ivan has been a huge part of my life, and we have a very special bond. He had a massive heart attack in his 30s that killed about 3/4 of his heart. He should have a died a long time ago, but God kept him alive for another 40 years. I love my Uncle very much, and the news really rattled me. I had a good cry, and I'm doing better. 

Going to the funeral is a must for me, so we'll be in Arizona next week. Which means there probably won't be any blogging next week.

It was a day of mourning yesterday. Sister Monson passed away yesterday morning as well.

My mom took me and my sister out shopping after I stopped crying. She wanted to buy us a new outfit for the funeral. It was fun but hard. I had fun buying a new skirt, but it was hard because I knew I'd be wearing it for my Uncle's funeral. 

I hope I can hold it together to get through next week. I think I will. I haven't been to a funeral in over 10 years. 

I will miss my Uncle, but I know he is in a better place, and that gives me comfort.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

The Scorpio Races

The Scorpio RacesGoodreads Description:    It happens at the start of every November: the Scorpio Races. Riders attempt to keep hold of their water horses long enough to make it to the finish line. Some riders live. Others die.

At age nineteen, Sean Kendrick is the returning champion. He is a young man of few words, and if he has any fears, he keeps them buried deep, where no one else can see them.

Puck Connolly is different. She never meant to ride in the Scorpio Races. But fate hasn’t given her much of a chance. So she enters the competition — the first girl ever to do so. She is in no way prepared for what is going to happen.

My Thoughts:

-    Being an animal lover, I really enjoyed this book! It was a great story about people and their relationship with animals, specifically horses.

-    I understand the uncertainty of animals. You might trust them, but they can still do unexpected things sometimes. 

-    I loved Puck and Sean's characters, and I loved their relationship with their horses. Sean and Corr really got to me.

-    The book is a little dry at times, but it is still very interesting. 

-    I feel like the most of the book is just anticipating the race! It made me agitated at times.

-    I want to own a horse now, and to learn to ride one!

-    I want to know how Puck got her nickname.

-    I love how the horses communicated to their riders and the reader without saying anything. Their body language was really well written. The horses became actual characters in the story.

-    Besides the race and the horses, there are other aspects and conflicts in the story. I think they added a lot to the story. It made it more realistic, and it made me more sympathetic the characters.

-    The ending almost made me cry! It was sad and happy all at the same time! 

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Books Dealing With Tough Subjects (abuse suicide, grief etc or something personal hard for you)

The Chosen One by Carol Lynch Williams:  A very solemn book that talks about the abuse a polygamy town.

Glimpse by Carol Lynch Williams:  This was a hard story for me to read. It is about two girls dealing with an abusive mother. 

Chasing Brooklyn by Lisa Schroeder:  This is about a girl trying to put herself back together after her boyfriend commits suicide! It is very sad but beautiful story.

Les Miserables by Victor Hugo:  There are a lot of tough subjects in this book. The characters go through a lot!

Out of the Easy by Ruta Sepetys:  This is about girl trying make a new life for herself. Her mother is a prostitute, and she wants to leave town and go to college.

Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys:  A historical fiction about a family suffering through Stalin's atrocities.

Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher:  A girl who commits suicide leaves behind 13 tapes to her classmates telling each of them how they contributed to her suicide. 

Lord of the Flies by William Golding:  It is hard to believe our humanity could turn into something horrible. This book makes my stomach queasy.

Animal Farm by George Orwell:  Some scary thoughts in this book about our society and following the crowd.

Hold Still by Nina LaCour:  A somber story about a girl who has lost her best friend to suicide.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Happy Mother's Day

The day I became a mom was the best day of my life! I love my little gnome, and I'm proud to be her mom.

Happy Mother's Day to all you moms out there!

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Photo a Day

This month I'm participating in Rae Gun Ramblings' Photo a Day.

Here are my photos for this week!

Day 5: Not Reading

Day 6: Book Haul

Day 7: Author

 Day 8: Book Nerd
I prefer the term geek! Gotta raise 'em young!

Day 9: Can't Wait For
 As in, can't wait for this to be in my belly!

Day 10: Borrowed

Day 11: Bookish Quirk
 My bookmark HAS to face the page I'm on, and I have to know where it is at all time or I panic.

You can follow my photos on Instragram

Friday, May 10, 2013

Shadow and Bone

Shadow and Bone (The Grisha, #1)From Goodreads:    The Shadow Fold, a swathe of impenetrable darkness, crawling with monsters that feast on human flesh, is slowly destroying the once-great nation of Ravka.

Alina, a pale, lonely orphan, discovers a unique power that thrusts her into the lavish world of the kingdom’s magical elite—the Grisha. Could she be the key to unravelling the dark fabric of the Shadow Fold and setting Ravka free?

The Darkling, a creature of seductive charm and terrifying power, leader of the Grisha. If Alina is to fulfill her destiny, she must discover how to unlock her gift and face up to her dangerous attraction to him.

But what of Mal, Alina’s childhood best friend? As Alina contemplates her dazzling new future, why can’t she ever quite forget him?

Glorious. Epic. Irresistible. Romance.

My Thoughts:

-    I really love the world that Bardugo created. It is based on countries I know, but it is still a unique new place. 

-    The characters were good, but I wasn't in love with them. I hope to get a better connection in the next book. 

-    I really liked Genya. She was a fun side character, and I really want to learn more about her. It would be awesome to have her power!

-    The story was really great! I was fascinated with what was going on, and I wanted to learn more. I knew there had to be a catch to everything that Alina was going through.

-    The ending is wide open for more, and the story is definitely not finished, but it wasn't a huge cliffhanger.

-    I really like how magic works. It was really thought out and makes sense.

-    I really don't have many thoughts on this book. It was a fun read, and I just cruised through it. It wasn't deep or complicated. I just enjoyed the ride. 

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Chasing Brooklyn

Chasing BrooklynGoodreads Synopsis:    Restless souls and empty hearts

Brooklyn can't sleep. Her boyfriend, Lucca, died only a year ago, and now her friend Gabe has just died of an overdose. Every time she closes her eyes, Gabe's ghost is there waiting for her. She has no idea what he wants or why it isn't Lucca visiting her dreams.

Nico can't stop. He's always running, trying to escape the pain of losing his brother, Lucca. But when Lucca's ghost begins leaving messages, telling Nico to help Brooklyn, emotions come crashing to the surface.

As the nightmares escalate and the messages become relentless, Nico reaches out to Brooklyn. But neither of them can admit that they're being haunted. Until they learn to let each other in, not one soul will be able to rest.

My Thoughts:

-    This is beautiful story of how to deal with loss and to pick up the pieces. I loved the message of this book!

-    I love how the relationship between Nico and Brooklyn develops. I think everyone needs someone like Nico. Someone who makes you feel good to be you and happy to be alive.

-    There is some profanity, but it tapers off towards the end.

-    I love that this book is written in verse. It really added a poetic and perfect mood. 

-    I can't really relate to what Brooklyn is going through, but I have felt and do feel some of the emotions she is going through. 

-    The story goes back and forth between Nico and Brooklyn's perspectives. It's like journal entries, but not. It's really well done!

-    There are some haunting bits in the story that gave me little chills. 

-    I love how Nico and Brooklyn start healing together and help each other. I especially love the Nico gets Brooklyn to start running and exercising to help heal her. Working out is so good for the body and soul!

-    The ending is so great! It put a little smile on my face!

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Magician: Master

Magician: Master (The Riftwar Saga, #2)Goodreads Description:    He held the fate of two worlds in his hands... 

Once he was an orphan called Pug, apprenticed to a sorcerer of the enchanted land of Midkemia.. Then he was captured and enslaved by the Tsurani, a strange, warlike race of invaders from another world.

There, in the exotic Empire of Kelewan, he earned a new name--Milamber. He learned to tame the unnimagined powers that lay withing him. And he took his place in an ancient struggle against an evil Enemy older than time itself.

My Thoughts:

-    I enjoyed this book more than the first. It had a lot more action and adventure.

-    The story starts up a few years after Apprentice ends.

-    Throughout the story a lot of the Tsurani people earned my respect. I didn't think of them as the evil enemy anymore.

-    Pug's vision on the tour is long. It isn't super interesting, and I'm not sure I understood it all. 

-    The voyage through the Straits of Darkness was thrilling! I loved learning more about Amos Trask.

-    The ending was perfect! Everything ended well, right down to the last words exchanged between Arutha and Trask. Things were resolved and everything seemed put right. 

-    What affection I gained for the characters in the first book only increased in this one! I loved learning more about each of them, and I loved seeing everyone mature and grow.

-    This book was wonderful! Absolutely epic and awesome!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday

 Top Ten Books When You Need Something Light & Fun

The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster:  I love this quirky book.

The Princess Diaries by Meg Cabot:  My guilty pleasure books. They are super light and fluffy, but I enjoy them.

Once Upon a Time Series:  Some of these aren't too good, but I enjoy a few of them. They are quick and fun Fairy Tale Retellings.

The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin:  This is a really quick and fun "clue" type mystery book.

Roald Dahl's Books:  I still enjoy reading one of his books here and there. They are so fun and clever!

Jessica Day George's Books:  I love her writing, and her books are always so light and fun!

Diary of a Wimpy Kid Series:  I find these books extremely hilarious.

Lindsey Leavitt's Books:  I think she is funny, and her books are a lot of fun and fluff.

The Wide Awake Princess Books by E.D. Baker:  These are fun Retellings with a bunch of different Fairy Tales thrown in the mix.

The Enchanted Forest Chronicles by Patricia C. Wrede:  I love this series! It is full of dragon fun!